Latin American Studies ETDs

Publication Date

Spring 5-14-1951


Although of all the Latin American states, the insular republic of Cuba has maintained the closest contact with the United States, there is nevertheless one aspect of that country's culture of which we have but little understanding. This aspect is the penetrating influence that the Negro has on Cuba's cultural development. Until recently even the white population of Cuba did not fully recognize the role that the Negro had played and is playing in its culture. Cultural traits that revealed definite Negro influence were frequently attributed to aboriginal sources, or their origin was politically ignored or treated with indifference. This pattern of behavior reminds one of Gunnar Myrdal's interesting observations of similar patterns of behavior in the deep south of the United States.

Any discussion of the culture of contemporary Cuba, especially in connection with its Negro population, inevitably leads to the work of Dr. Fernando Ortiz y Fernández. He is the individual, in the writer's opinion, who has the clearest perspective of that aspect of Cuba's culture. This thesis, therefore, will deal with the life and works of Ortiz, and with some forces which seem to have influenced his intellectual development, with the intention of determining, wherever possible, his position on various topics that have created considerable interest during his lifetime.




Fernando Ortiz, Cuba, Cubanidad, Afro-Cubanism

Document Type


Degree Name

Latin American Studies

Level of Degree


Department Name

Latin American Studies

Second Department

Latin American Studies

First Committee Member (Chair)

Miguel Jorrín

Second Committee Member

Lyle Saunders

Third Committee Member

Charles Burnet Judah